Community, Health Services,

Palliative care service to gain designated beds

Patients requiring Palliative care will now have dedicated beds with space for family and friends to visit more comfortably at Latrobe Regional Health (LRH).

“Palliative care, is a specialised area of our work and while we’ve been offering this for many years at LRH, we now have the ability to dedicate specific beds with both more space but also lounge areas and day beds for members of the patient’s family,” Chief Executive of LRH, Don McRae said.

As well as the provision of dedicated beds for the first time, LRH will also have specialised medical and nursing teams on hand to provide specialised patient care 24 hours a day seven days a week.

“For many people, palliative care takes place in the community with teams visiting the patient at home and providing care and supporting the family,” Clinical Lead with the Palliative Care Team, Dr Ahmed Nagla said.

“This new service works with the community-based teams to offer a clearer pathway to those requiring in-patient care.

Admissions might be required due to complex pain management for the patient, agitation in the home setting and to relive some of the stress faced by the caregiver at home.

“This is a difficult time for the families and loved ones of the patient and we hope that this additional service makes this period a little easier for them,” Dr Nagla said.

The introduction of the specialised beds comes after a six-month trial on the Nicholson Unit where bigger rooms, access to a quiet garden space as well as lounges were found to provide a more helpful environment for patients and their families.

“We’ve always had the individual doctors and the nursing staff who have been able to provide excellent end of life care for patients,” Chief Executive of LRH Don McRae said.

“What the formation of a specialised Palliative Care Inpatient Service does is more clearly identify it from a public point of view but also provides a clearer pathway for staff wanting to specialise in this field to maintain their training and see LRH as a place of career development providing exceptional care to the community,” Mr McRae said.

Pictured L-R: Eboney Devenie, Dr Ahmed Nagla, Dr Amanda Ormerod, Paul Marks, Dr Rawa Fadheel, Dr Lysa Jenkins.